Joanie Ford – Oct 11, 2021

Meeting at 12 PM Demonstration at 12:30 PM
“Creating a Painting from Your Photo”

OAG members were treated to an Awesome presentation by Joanie Ford! Joanie and OAG Program chairperson Gail Bannock received many, many thanks from those attending!!

Joanie Ford – Professional Photographer & Accomplished Artist – Photos for this article courtesy of Gail Bannock
Joanie Ford – “Creating a Painting from Your Photo”

Visit Joanie Ford’s website –

Below are just a few crumbs from Joanie’s talk. Read on!

Camera Ready? Think First!

When photographing a scene, Joanie suggests that we stop before we click away!!!!
Spend time looking at the scene
Pick a good subject
Think about cropping (zoom in)
Take several different photographs
Look for drama (lighting and focus)
Be intentional
Just because a scene is beautiful does not mean it will make a good painting
Remember: Composition is the gravity that holds a painting together (Frank Webb).


Joanie uses software to translate the reference photo into a well composed painting.
Joanie keeps a visual reference sheet of many types of composition and studies the photo for a close match.
She then applies her favorite software tools to look for the painting in her photo.
Photoshop Elements $79 for editing the photo
Value Study App – for making Notans and value studies (free) Saturate values for stronger contrast.
FotoSketcher App – For showing you ideas (free)

Composition is KEY!

Ultimately, the painting is not about the subject. It is the COMPOSITION that matters.
Crop to find the DRAMA. The area of greatest contrast becomes the focal point. To keep the viewer’s eye in the painting use branches or linear elements as “pointers” leading the eye to the center of interest.
Arrange all shapes to integrate toward one place. Use light to lead the viewer to the focus, around the painting, and back.

Reverse (flip) the photo for a different view. Look for a possible S composition (see below). Re-position elements along a diagonal. Avoid bright colors at edges or corners that pull the eye outside the frame.

Think about the illusion of depth. For depth of view and atmospheric effects, add lavender.

Choose dominance of land or sky, never equal.

SIMPLIFY. Remove unnecessary objects. Focus attention on what is important and minimize detail in the rest of the painting.
How much detail? The amount of information depends on the size of the painting.

Count areas of the painting. Too many? Look for strong value masses. The boat! Find areas that can be removed (a second boat), or cropped (at top of the photo) for fewer areas.

Apply the Principles if Art and Design: Simplification, Repetition, Rhythm, Balance, Dominance, Emphasis, Gradation, Contrast Harmony, Variety, Movement, Proportion, Leading Lines, Rule of Thirds, Rule of Odds, Triangles.
Joanie showed us that there is much to consider before we begin a painting. She shared with us the tools that help translate what we saw through the camera lens, and how to use the principles of composition to bring our vision to life in a painting that draws the viewer into a magical scene. Thank you, Joanie!

Lunch and a Movie! Sept 25, 2021

Another fun social event for OAG members!

Matinee outing -September 25th , 2021

OAG is heading to the MOVIES!!!! What better way to spend an afternoon ? Grabbing a bite and then heading to a CLASSIC MOVIE? We want to see our lovely  OAG Art  Show inspired by the Beatles Movie:” A Hard Day’s Night”.

Some of us are going to meet at Ivy on the Square Restaurant for Lunch at  NOON and then head across the street  to the Marion Theater to see the 2:00 Matinee on Saturday, September 25th.It’s a real BARGAIN  at only $5. 

Let Lee Asta know if you’d like to be included in lunch and she will try to make RESERVATIONS:
 Look forward to spending the afternoon together!!!! Lee Asta

The Luncheon venue had to be changed to the Braised Onion at the last minute, but everyone who attended had a great time!

Attending Heather Doherty and new members: Dori Sullivan, Nancy Sepe, Sheila Sugerman; Glori Kohlmann; Jan Kiszonak and Lee Asta:

Well! Well! Well! What’s going on here? Laughing? Red shirts? Lunch? Talking? Oh! Now I figured it out!!! It’s those OAG artists again!!! Ok so where were they off to? In a short survey as they were leaving , they commented: “we just saw the Classic Movie:”A Hard Days Night” starring the Beatles. So? How was it? Comments: The music was great! The story was long! The theater was chilly! It was better if we were seeing it in the 1960’s!!! (we’d be younger too!!!) The OAG Art Show was beautiful! People were actually seen studying the art!!!! I’d go to the next one! The theater downstairs was nicely redone!

Dennis Kaminski- Sept 13, 2021

Meeting at 12 PM followed by Program:
“Choosing the BEST Products to Make YOUR Artwork Standout!”

Dennis Kaminski – Best products for Your Media September 13, 2021 – Photo Courtesy of Joanie Ford

Weather cooperated and from 11 am -12 PM, while the Board meet for their executive meeting, “hostess” Jan Tindall welcomed about 16 OAG members to a pleasant lunch and chat on the patio at Brick City gallery before the members’ meeting and program.

At the members’ business meeting President Lee Asta introduced 6 new members of OAG! Membership is growing again to pre-COVID numbers.
A highlight of the meeting was approval by the membership of the revision of the Bylaws. The newly revised Bylaws are now posted on the website.
Board members Lynn King and Gail Bannock announced an exciting lineup of exhibits, programs and events for new season. Webmaster Barbara Fife encouraged to submit new of their awards, recognition, link to their website, and images of their work for the Member pages of the website. Cindy Vener was thanked for setting up an Instagram account for Ocala Art Group.

Photo Courtesy of Joanie Ford – Some of the members attending the September meeting.

Dennis Kaminski waited patiently in the wings through all this. Dennis shared with s a wealth of information about available art supplies for every medium. Dennis explained the different surfaces, wood-pulp and cotton fiber papers, matboard quality, the spectrum of canvases, coated masonite choices, and cradled board.

Have you ever wanted to test a brush before you buy? Dennis actually encourages artists to test brushes (water only) before your purchase! Quality brushes will last a very long time if cared for properly. Masters(General) and Escoda manufacture brush soap. A misshapen brush carelessly stored? Dip the hairs in very hot water for 20-30 seconds, to relax the hairs, then apply brush soap and shape. Dry horizontal on a support with hairs not touching anything. Good as new!!

There really IS a difference in the quality of graphite pencils. Tip: avoid the death grip on pencils by holding farther back on the pencil. That probably holds true for brushes, too…..

Best paint? In any medium, pigment content is key. Less expensive lines contain more vehicle, brighteners, filler, less pigment. For LOTS of Watercolor paint information, Dennis recommended the online resource An encyclopedia!!!

Visit GOLDEN at to learn more about their full range of products. You can even print out a “recipe” for a specific mix.

And Dennis carries a full line of EVERYTHING in his large store in Leesburg. Definitely a destination for artists!!!

COMING Wednesday, November 10… AN “ART-VENTURE” TO LEESBURG!!!!! Details and flyer on the Calendar page.

Thank you an entertaining as well of very informative presentation, Dennis!

Classic Movie Challenge

September 2021

A Hard Day’s Night

We set up a “spur of the moment” NEW scheduled event: we plan on attending TOGETHER a Classic Beatles’ Movie date at the Marion Theater …. Watch for date and time– quick lunch locally then do the $5 Matinee….Hope you can make it!!!! Lee

How many of these can you match up with photos above?

Lee Asta: Yellow Submarine
Joanie Ford: Music and Memories
Marian Savage: Hard Days Night
Iris Kaplan: Happy Daze and Music Magic
Linda DeLuca: A Hard Days Night
Janice Tindall: In Memorium and A Hard Days Night

Art-venture- WEC- Aug 4, 2021

Ruth Dexheimer, Marion Savage, Heather Doherty, Lee Asta (President), Joanie Ford, Marge Picard, Lisa Woodward

Well…… August 4th finally arrived and so did the torrential rain that followed!!! Being the staunch Members of OAG, we arrived at 10 A.M. with rain gear, water and other supplies (which we left in the car…A MISTAKE that we learned later on!!!)

The Equestrian Hotel was better than we had heard and did not disappoint any of us!!! The Architecture was GRAND! The Interior Decorating was GRAND! The art was GRAND! The horses we saw were GRAND! Everything was GRAND!!!!Our lunch at the lovely Italian cafe was GRAND too! 

Everyone who could do so, came in the proper RED (or near red) shirt so we could spot them easier from afar! The whole experience made us feel that we were on a luxurious INTERLUDE!!!

WE left there feeling VERY GRAND INDEED!

Unfortunately, we set out with 2 missions which we could not complete: First, we were looking for our friend GiGi who is working there at one of the Gift Shops (we never found her!!!).  Second, we were wanting to see if this would be a PROPER VENUE for one of our POPUP art shows? (Some of us were so IMPRESSED by the quality of the displayed artwork -which were all beautiful and elegant DOGS- that we found ourselves somewhat intimidated!) SO OUR CONCLUSION WAS: we will have to come back another time to reassess this location and try to find GIGI!!!


Click below to enjoy the video of our Grand Art-venture!


Photos of the event courtesy of Joanie Ford and Lee Asta.

Classic Movie Challenge

“Funny Girl” At Historic Marion Theatre – July 1 through September 2, 2021


Leona Asta.        Henry Street and Funny Girl
Gail Bannock.    The Funny
Linda DeLuca.   Under the Brooklyn Bridge 
Iris Kaplan.        Freedom and  Happy Daze
Lynn King.         Hello Gorgeous 
Jan Kiszonak.     Funny Girl
Marian Savage.   New York Duet
Janet Sullivan.    Babs
Janice Tindall.    Baby Snooks and Uh-oh!

June Luncheon- June 9, 2021

Installation of Officers at Braised Onion Luncheon
click below to see the 1 minute video….

Thank you, Mac Harris for contributing the photos of this event.

A Message from new OAG President Leona (Lee) Asta

June 2021…was an exciting month for me!!! On the FIRST of the month, I stepped into the shoes left behind by our DEAR outgoing President Sharon Harris. Sharon gave us a strong term of leadership, patience and stamina to get us back up on our feet from a somewhat tired 70 year old ORGANIZATION. We are now a revitalized art group due to her leadership and hard work!!! We could NOT HAVE DONE IT WITHOUT HER!!! Thanks so much for all  your hard work Sharon and enjoy your “retirement”!!!
I am HONORED to be your PRESIDENT and, like Sharon Harris and other Presidents before me,  I will work very hard for OAG’s success .

Thanks to second Vice President Gail Bannock and her Phantom Assistant, Linda DeLuca, the June Luncheon (with almost 20 in attendance) was a nice time for socializing and Brainstorming!!!….and of course: eating!!!!!

Leona (Lee) Asta, President

PS if you had been at our luncheon you would have learned some intimate secrets about our members: who was a Primary Care Doctor before retiring? Who has had 4 husbands (so far)? Who used to scoop ice cream before retiring? SORRY but you know the old saying: what happens at our Luncheons STAYS at our Luncheons!! You will just have to come to the next one in December to learn more secrets!!!!!

Classic Movie Challenge

“North By Northwest” at Historic Marion Theatre

Poster provided by Pamela Calero Wardell

Iris Kaplan and Jan Tindall,
On behalf of the OAG, it’s members and myself personally: I’d like to thank you both for the impressive venue you presented recently on our behalf at the Marion Historical Theater! The setting was elegant and our art show added to the atmosphere! You and the Members who showed their artwork there should be very proud!!! The variety of subjects inspired by the Classic  movie “North  by Northwest” was truly entertaining and showed how well our members can create outside their “comfort zones”. What a “fun challenge”!! I’m already working on the next Classic Cinema Challenge: “Funny Girl”….I hope our members accept this next Challenge (details on our Website) and enjoy a surge in their CREATIVITY!!!!! AND…of course …I DO  hope they manage to come to the next Showing  and  delightful Reception!!! Sincerely, President  Lee Asta

Art Credits:
Jan Tindall- Mt. Rushmore (up-close) “Peril on the Mountain” and “The Flight”; also graphite of Cary Grant “Cary, Cary, Cary”
Iris Kaplan – (arm and gun) ” Frenetic, Heritage and Magnetic”
Lee Asta- “Dusty Road #1” and “Dusty Road #2”
Jan Kiszonak- graphite “N x NW”
Catherine Sullivan- pastel “One Giant MacGuffin”
Joanie Ford- “Mr. Grant”